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Invited Lecture
Overview of Image Guided Minimal Invasive Surgery
Haim Azhari
Technion – Israel Institute of Technology

Brief Bio
Prof. Haim Azhari, was born in Jerusalem, Israel in 1955. He received his B.Sc in Mechanical Eng. from the Technion in 1977, his M.Sc. (Cum Laude) in Biomedical Eng. from Tel-Aviv University 1984, and his D.Sc. in Biomedical Eng. from The Technion in 1987. From 1987 to 1990 he was on the staff of the Technion Department of Biomedical Engineering in a postdoctoral position. Prof. Azhari then received a double appointment as an International Research Fellow in both the Department of Radiology and the Division of Cardiology at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore Maryland USA, and was in the USA from 1990 to 1992. On his return in 1992 he was appointed Senior Lecturer in the Department of Biomedical Engineering Technion-IIT. From 1999-2000 he was on a Sabbatical leave at Harvard Medical School at Beth-Israel radiology department at Boston Massachusetts.
His Field of research is Medical imaging, which includes: Multimodal imaging. Application of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and Ultrasound in medical imaging. Algorithms and methods for image reconstruction. Image processing, and information fusion and extraction from medical images. Image guided therapy.
Prof. Azhari is the former president of the Israeli Society for Medical and Biological Engineering (ISMBE).

The current trend in modern surgery is towards minimal invasive intervention. Instead of using the traditional surgeon knife with its associated wounds, stitches and long healing process, laparoscopic devices and techniques are continuously being developed. One prominent approach which has gained popularity in recent years is thermal ablation. The concept is to elevate the temperature at the region of interest to the extent where irreversible damage is inflicted to the target tissue. Two main techniques lead the field. The first is based on the insertion of a needle type applicator to the target region (commonly a tumor) and dispensing at its tip some form of energy such as: laser, radiofrequency or microwave. As a result, the local temperature is elevated and ablation occurs. The second leading technique utilizes High Intensity Focused Ultrasound (HIFU). With this technique, a special ultrasound transducer (or an array of transducers) located outside the body focuses high acoustic energy at a focal spot within the body. This creates a virtual "knife" which destroys non-invasively a small volume of tissue.
  Regardless of the technique implemented, there are several challenges which are associated with such procedures. The main ones are: target identification, image guidance, non-invasive thermal monitoring and non-invasive damage control. In this lecture some of the technical challenges will be presented and suggested solutions developed by our group and others using ultrasound, MRI and CT will be introduced. Finally, a short video clip depicting a noninvasive brain surgery in an awake patient will be presented.